“Guys like us, that work on ranches, are the loneliest guys in the world. They got no family. They don’t belong no place…With us it ain’t like that. We got a future. We got somebody to talk to that gives a damn about us. We don’t have to sit in no bar room blowin’ in our jack jus’ because we got no place else to go. If them other guys gets in jail they can rot for all anybody gives a damn. But not us.”
Lennie broke in. “But not us! An’ why? Because…because I got you to look after me, and you got me to look after you, and that’s why.”
– John Steinbeck
Of Mice and Men, Chapter 1. George extols the virtues of friendship to Lenny, explaining that they are not like everyone else that work in their profession because they travel together. He reassures him of their special relationship and that they will look after each other no matter what happens. In the novella Steinbeck romanticizes and idealizes male friendships.